The Pigeon/Jones Watershed Project is a comprehensive watershed effort that will provide flood control, erosion and sediment control and grade stabilization benefits in the 20,316 acre Pigeon/Jones Creek Watershed in Dakota County. The benefits will be realized on thousands of acres of irrigated cropland in the Missouri River bottom lands where the combined Pigeon and Jones Creek empty into the Pigeon Creek Levee System. Eighteen sediment and erosion control structures are planned for this watershed. Five have been completed.
In addition, the construction of Pigeon/Jones Flood Control Site #15 (shown at left) has created a 228 surface acre lake with 595 acres of additional park land. Now named Kramper Reservoir and Danish Alps State Recreation Area, this site includes “no wake” boating, fishing, hiking and biking trails, equestrian trails and campgrounds. The steep terrain will also be uniquely suited to mountain biking on trails provided for that use. The structure is currently being built and it is slated for opening in 2014.
Partnering with the NRD on this project are the NE Resources Development Fund, NE Dept of Environmental Quality, NE Game and Parks Commission, NE Environmental Trust, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Dakota County.
For more information contact:
Terry Schumacher, Land and Water Programs Coordinator
Elk/Pigeon Creek Drainage Project
The NRD now maintains 15 miles of levees along both Pigeon and Elk Creeks. The cost of the capital improvements to this drainage project are shared equally from the NRD general fund and the revenue generated from a special property assessment on area property. Recent improvements include leveling the top of the Pigeon Creek levees for better uniformity and to enhance maintenance. Unwanted woody vegetation within the levees or immediately adjacent to the levees was removed to improve their long-term integrity. Elk Creek has also received two grade stabilization structures to deter channel degradation which can cause slope stability problems for the levees.
A project to reduce the sediment buildup in Pigeon Creek has begun.. The dredging will help lessen historical flooding of adjacent agricultural land. Approximately 7 miles of the creek will be dredged by Natural Resources District crews. This area received considerable flooding in June, 2014. The Pigeon Creek Levee was damaged twice during June due to record rainfall. This new dredging work will greatly improve the capacity of the levees to safely convey heavy rainfall runoff.
Dredging will be done from approximately Highway 77, north of Homer, upstream to the bridge at South Bluff Rd, east of Hubbard. This project is part of the Elk/Pigeon Creek Improvement Project Area and will be paid for with Natural Resources District funding. Dredging of the seven miles will continue through this fall and into 2017.
Emergency Watershed Protection Project
Flood control levees along a portion of Elk Creek, near the Village of Jackson in Dakota County, have experienced severe sloughing and bank erosion due to high water events in 2010 and 2011. At their March 14th meeting, the Board of Directors of the Papio-Missouri River NRD approved a construction contract with Cooney Fertilizer Inc., totaling $1.2 million for channel stabilization work on Elk Creek from Highway 20 to 137th Street. “The prevention of flood damage is our top priority,” said John Winkler, NRD General Manager. “It’s important to the NRD to address both rural and urban flood control needs throughout our six-county NRD area,” he said.
The project is in cooperation with the U.S.D.A. Natural Resources Conservation Service and involves the relocation of the existing right bank levee away from Elk Creek and constructing a levee with more stable slopes. It is anticipated that seventy-five percent of the cost will be paid through the U.S.D.A’s Emergency Watershed Protection program. The remaining 25 percent of the cost would be paid by the Natural Resources District.
The levees protect 3,840 acres of agricultural land in addition to Highway 20 and 137th Street from flooding. According to the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the potential yearly flood damage is estimated at $1.5 million.
For More Information contact:
Martin Cleveland, Construction Engineer